Raleigh Police release body camera footage after officer shot man holding pellet gun
Vehicle and body camera videos released Thursday show a Raleigh police officer shot a man who was pointing an apparent weapon at the officer.
Officer C.T. Melochik shot Michael Anthony Hendricks Jr., 40, in the stomach May 19 at Quail Ridge Apartments off Falls of Neuse Road. Hendricks was holding an “Airsoft gun” with its orange safety tip removed, according to a report Police Chief Cassandra Deck-Brown released last week.
“Pursuant to the Raleigh Police Department’s continuing effort to foster transparency and trust in our community, RPD has decided to release body worn camera and dash camera footage related to the incident,” according to text on an edited video of the body camera and dash camera footage.
The city released six videos including five unedited clips and one file edited together with captions from the Police Department.
The department obtained court approval to release the video, as required by state law.
A 911 call made at the time of the shooting records a man telling dispatchers: “There’s a man in the corridor with a knife. He’s a vet. He’s having a flashback.”
Body-worn camera footage shows Melochik arriving and a witness immediately telling him the suspect is outside of the apartment complex, armed with a knife and possibly a handgun. After about a minute of looking for the man, Melochik goes back toward the witnesses to get a description of the man.
Witnesses then point to Hendricks behind a line of parked cars, according to body camera footage. Melochik ducks behind a patrol car and draws his weapon.
Hendricks, like the witnesses, are blurred out through video editing and it isn’t clear if he is holding a weapon from the officer’s body camera video.
Video from a patrol car’s dash cam, however, shows Hendicks in the parking lot pointing something at the officer.
Melochik looks over the patrol car before rushing back, saying, “He has a gun! He has a gun!” Other body camera and dash camera footage shows more officers arriving around this time.
Melochik calls out twice for the man to drop the gun before firing his weapon once.
The entire incident takes less than three minutes after Melochik appears to arrive at the apartment complex.
Officers then approach Hendricks, putting him in handcuffs until medical personnel arrive. The video says they provide medical aid.
At one point Hendricks says, “I can’t breathe.”
Melochik has been placed on administrative leave pending the case’s outcome. The State Bureau of Investigation will investigate the shooting and report to the Wake County district attorney, which is standard procedure in such incidents.
On Thursday, Hendricks was not listed as a WakeMed patient, meaning he has been released or has invoked a “privacy designation.”